Reading Time: 2 minutes
Listen to this article

The Hidden Dangers of Herbal Fairness Creams: A Cautionary Tale

In recent incidents reported from Raigad, two individuals, Ms. Namita Shinde (24) and Mr. Ramesh More (56), experienced severe kidney complications after using fairness creams purportedly of herbal origin. Despite being marketed as safe and natural, these creams contained hazardous substances, including mercury, which led to detrimental effects on their health.

The Cases

Ms. Shinde and Mr. More, both suffering from substantial body edema, sought medical attention at Medicover Hospitals in Navi Mumbai. Upon examination, it was discovered that they exhibited high levels of protein in their urine, a common indicator of kidney dysfunction. Further investigation through kidney biopsies confirmed membranous nephropathy, a serious renal condition.

The Toxic Components

Notably, the presence of the NELL-1 antigen, often associated with certain malignancies, raised additional concerns. Moreover, the detection of mercury, a hazardous metal prevalent in numerous skin-lightening treatments, underscored the perilous nature of these creams.

Professional Insights

Dr. Amit Langote, Head of Nephrology and Kidney Transplant at Medicover Hospitals, emphasized the dangers associated with non-FDA-approved fairness creams. He elucidated how these creams, purportedly designed to inhibit melanocytes responsible for skin pigmentation, can inadvertently lead to severe health complications. Mr. More admitted to using a cream provided by his barber for five months, which resulted in elevated mercury levels in his blood. However, prompt treatment helped alleviate his condition, reducing proteinuria and improving kidney function.

The Female Patient's Ordeal

Similarly, Ms. Shinde, relying on a fairness cream recommended by her local doctor, encountered similar health issues. Elevated levels of mercury were detected in her system, necessitating ongoing treatment under medical supervision

A Call for Caution

Dr. Langote issued a stark warning to consumers, urging them to exercise caution when selecting skincare products. He stressed the importance of purchasing only FDA-approved skin-lightening treatments and consulting with a healthcare professional beforehand to mitigate potential risks.


The cases of Ms. Shinde and Mr. More serve as poignant reminders of the hidden dangers lurking in seemingly harmless skincare products. Their experiences underscore the critical need for stringent regulations in the cosmetic industry and heightened consumer awareness regarding product safety. As consumers, it is imperative to prioritize health over cosmetic enhancements and make informed choices to safeguard our well-being.



Source: Inputs from various media Sources

the aartery chronicles

Priya Bairagi

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Get Articles of your preference delivered to your Mailbox!

Scroll to Top